Too much smoking in movies: help Oscar quit!
Huron County, ON – In this year’s Academy Awards, 19 of the 22 movies nominated in a major category contains scenes with smoking.
Smoking in movies, especially youth-rated movies, is a health concern. According to the World Health Organization, movies showing use of tobacco products have enticed millions of youth worldwide to start smoking.
In Ontario it’s estimated that at least 185,000 children and teens will start smoking from exposure to onscreen smoking.
“Movies remain one of the last ways the tobacco industry can advertise their products to children and youth”, says Jacquie Uprichard, Public Health Promoter with the Huron County Health Unit. “Hollywood plays an important role in shaping popular culture and movies tend to glamorize tobacco use instead of showing the negative health consequences of its use, or the struggle with addiction that many tobacco users face.”
The Smoke-Free Movies initiative, however, would mean in Ontario any new films that showed smoking would be given an 18A rating.
“The evidence is clear,” says Uprichard. “The more kids and teens see smoking in movies, the more likely they are to start. There are many ways to get involved, and we encourage the community to learn more about the influence of tobacco in movies, and to take action to protect our kids. It’s time to help Oscar quit smoking!”
International Week of Action is an annual event leading up to the Oscars that brings together members of the smoke-free movies action networks from around the world to raise awareness on this issue.
Visit www.smokefreemovies.ca for more information or to take action.